Broken Promise

by Matthew Stollak on Monday, January 25, 2010

This past week, Mike Vandervort published the pros and cons of having Al Gore as a keynote speaker at the 2010 SHRM Annual Conference in San Diego. Out of curiosity, I went back through my old conference programs to see who SHRM has chosen as keynote speakers in the past and whether Al Gore is truly a controversial choice.

2001 - San Francisco - Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf, Doris Kearns Goodwin, Gary Hamel, Nando Parrado

2002 - Philadelphia - Rudy Guiliani, David McCullough, Gordon Bethune, Star Jones

2003 - Orlando - Madeleine Albright, Jim Collins, Tom Morris, Dr. C.K. Prahalad

2004 - New Orleans - Queen Noor, Magic Johnson (replaced by Christopher Reeve), Marcus Buckingham, Scott Livengood

2005 - San Diego - Bill Cosby, Malcolm Gladwell, David Ulrich, Bertice Berry

2006 - Washington, D.C., Gen. Colin Powell, Louis Gerstner, David McCullough, Liz Murray

2007 - Las Vegas - Lance Armstrong, Linda Alvarado, Dan Pink, Erin Gruwell

2008 - Chicago - Sidney Poitier, Patrick Lencioni, Doris Kearns Goodwin, Nancy Giles

2009 - New Orleans - Jack Welch, Earl Graves, John Kotter, Lee Woodruff

2010 - San Diego - Steve Forbes, Al Gore, Angela Herrin (panel), Marcus Buckingham

So, SHRM has chosen a number of conservative voices as prominent speakers (in Giuliani and Powell). One could say Al Gore is the first political person from the other side of the aisle in over 10 years. Is it really that controversial?


"one could say Al Gore is the first political person from the other side of the aisle in over 10 years."

-Did you forget Madeleine Albright?

by Anonymous on January 25, 2010 at 8:35 AM. #

Fair point. If we want to be specific, we could probably put Schwarzkopf, Guiliani, Powell, and Forbes to the right, and Albright and Gore on the left.

by Matthew Stollak on January 25, 2010 at 10:24 AM. #

What does it matter who speaks. SHRM has proven to be year after year less and less effective. The organization has showed a rapid decline in membership also evidence by the number of members who attend their annual conference. Thus the reaching out to India to draw in new members. Human Resources needs to be restructured starting with SHRM. Smaller organizations of late have added more positive guidance and have helped the struggling HR community far more than SHRM.

by Anonymous on January 25, 2010 at 10:31 AM. #

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